Best VPN for Australia in 2021

Ethan Payne
Ethan Payne | Writer
Last updated: October 26, 2021

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In recent years, Australia has made internet privacy very difficult for its citizens. This country is a member of the Five Eyes surveillance alliance, and it allows your online activities to be recorded and stored in data warehouses. Moreover, the new surveillance bill allows law enforcement to hack into your devices without a warrant.

Using a VPN is the best way to avoid getting spied on or hacked in Australia.

Luckily, there’s still a way to stay secure and private in the Land Down Under.

A quality VPN for Australia will give you the tools to remain anonymous on the internet. It means that neither your Internet Service Provider (ISP) nor your government will have any idea what you’re doing online. That’s why we recommend you only the best VPN services for Australia in 2021.

Top 3 VPNs for Australia

Want to get straight to the point? No problem. Here are our 3 best VPNs for Australia in 2021.

#PROVIDERCATEGORY SCORECATEGORY SCORE
1.
All-around leading VPN
9.6
2.
Forward-thinking and cheap
9.4
3.
Cheapest VPN for Australia
9.2

How to get the best VPN for Australia

  1. Get a VPN with servers in Australia. We recommend NordVPN, now 72% off
  2. After installation, pick a server in Australia or any other country
  3. Connect to the VPN server
  4. Boom! You’re now safe online!

Get the best VPN for Australia

Why do you need a VPN for Australia

While Australia is far from China in terms of surveillance and censorship, there are still some strict rules over what you can and can’t do online. If your privacy matters to you, we highly recommend a VPN for Australia.

For starters, Australia is a member of the Fourteen Eyes alliance. As a result, your data can and will be shared with other member countries, such as the US. This means your Internet Service Provider (ISP) will collect your personal information and browsing habits, and the government will take it with pleasure.

Additionally, torrenting without a VPN in Australia is dangerous. Most P2P tracking sites are blocked, even though you can use a torrenting client like uTorrent. If you happen to download copyrighted content, don’t be surprised if law enforcement suddenly becomes interested in you.

Finally, the new Surveillance Legislation Amendment (Identify and Disrupt) Bill 2020 gives the police unprecedented power to access your devices, control social media, and modify data. Most importantly, this doesn’t require a warrant from a jury, making Australia one of the most controlling countries in the world.

Should you or your company not comply, you may face a jail sentence of up to 10 years. While the bill is supposedly aimed at helping combat child exploitation and terrorism, it actually can be used for investigating any serious offense, such as tax evasion or piracy. All this wouldn’t sound that bad if there were safeguards against abusing these new law enforcement powers.

To sum up, to protect your privacy in Australia, use one of our recommended VPN providers below.

Overview of the best VPNs for Australia in 2021

All of the best Australia VPNs you see below are great in their own way. Some excel at speed, while others offer unbeatable prices. However, they’re also on this list because of what they have in common.

Whichever VPN for Australia you choose, it will work on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. Each of them comes with military-grade encryption, a no-logs policy, and leak protection. Besides, expect to avoid geo-blocking and torrenting restrictions.

1. NordVPN – the best VPN for Australia

9.6
Top VPN provider
Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
60
Number of servers
Number of servers:
5100
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat, Email
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
1,263 Mbit/s
  • Top-notch security features
  • Excellent speeds
  • Great for streaming
  • No router app

NordVPN is hands down the best VPN for Australia in 2021. This VPN is just as great if you’re living abroad and want to access content that’s only available in Australia, like the local Netflix library. In fact, NordVPN easily unblocks other popular streaming platforms (BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Disney+) as well.

User will get around 190 servers in Australia and 5100+ of them worldwide. Thanks to such a large server fleet and NordVPN’s propriety tunneling protocol in NordLynx, this provider remains the fastest VPN in the world. As a result, expect quick P2P downloads and high-quality video streaming.

With NordVPN, your safety is in good hands. To begin with, this service is located in privacy-friendly Panama and had its no-logs policy independently audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Moreover, a reliable kill switch and zero DNS or IP leaks further enhances your privacy. Moving on, we find AES 256-bit encryption, used by the military. NordVPN also boasts CyberSec, Double VPN, Obfuscated servers, and Onion over VPN features that you won’t find elsewhere easily.

You can use this Australia VPN on up to 6 devices simultaneously or set it up on a router and connect as many devices as you want. What’s more, you don’t need to commit right away. NordVPN has a 7-day free trial (requires Android) and a lengthy 30-day money-back guarantee.

For a deeper investigation of NordVPN, read our NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark – a powerful yet affordable option

9.4
Top VPN provider
Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
65
Number of servers
Number of servers:
3200
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat, FAQ
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
503 Mbit/s
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Highly affordable
  • Great performance
  • No-logs policy hasn't been audited

Surfshark has more than enough features to land on our best VPN for Australia in 2021 list. The company is registered in the British Virgin Islands, far away from the Fourteen Eyes surveillance alliance. Furthermore, their strict no-logs policy means that your data won’t be collected and shared with anyone.

However, Surfshark’s privacy isn’t its only strength. With AES 256-bit encryption, WireGuard tunneling protocol, and a kill switch, you’ll find a combination that is secure and fast at the same time.

Surfshark has 70+ servers in five Australian cities (Sydney, Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane) and 3200+ in total. This translates into great connectivity and exceptional performance. As a result, Surfshark is among the fastest VPNs in 2021.

The speeds are good enough to comfortably stream Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and other content platforms. Additionally, expect HD or even UHD quality next to fast and secure P2P downloads. And if you find yourself outside of Australia, Surfshark will let you access local channels, news portals, and shopping centers.

Moreover, Surfshark has unlimited simultaneous connections, a rare feature even among the VPNs for Australia. You can try this provider for 7-days for free on your mobile device. Last but not least comes the 30-day money-back guarantee.

For a deeper investigation of Surfshark VPN, read our Surfshark VPN review.

3. PrivateVPN – cheap Australia VPN for streaming

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
62
Number of servers
Number of servers:
150
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
111 Mbit/s
  • Great for Netflix
  • 7-day free trial
  • Cheap
  • macOS and iOS apps have fewer features

PrivateVPN is one of the most budget-friendly VPNs for Australia. Besides, it’s also great for streaming in Down Under and unblocking local content from outside. Therefore, if watching Netflix and other content platforms is your top goal, get PrivateVPN right away.

One of the smallest VPN server fleets with 150+ servers in 62+ countries successfully competes with quantity-oriented providers. There are servers in Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, and Brisbane, allowing you to choose the closest one, no matter whether you’re connecting from Australia or elsewhere.

In the end, PrivateVPN covers the most important locations and provides good connection speeds.

This VPN service is great for securing your connection as well. It all starts with military-grade encryption, leak protection, and a kill switch (excluding iOS). Moreover, PrivateVPN has a robust no-logs policy and accepts cryptocurrencies that further enhance your anonymity. Finally, a Stealth VPN feature is great against firewalls that try to detect VPN usage.

PrivateVPN allows 6 devices per account. That being said, users can remove the limit by installing this Australia VPN on a router. Those who are not sure about getting the service right away can exercise a 7-day free trial and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

For a deeper investigation of PrivateVPN, read our PrivateVPN review.

4. VyprVPN – the cheapest secure VPN for Australia

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
70
Number of servers
Number of servers:
700
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
69 Mbit/s
  • Highly affordable
  • Excellent security and privacy
  • Unblocks Netflix and other platforms
  • No anonymous payments

Starting from $1.67/month only, VyprVPN is the cheapest VPN for Australia in 2021. Not only that, this provider has excellent security and privacy credentials needed to be on this article.

Located in Switzerland, a country without data retention laws, VyprVPN is great for avoiding Australia’s blocks and restrictions. Furthermore, an independently-audited no-logs policy ensures that your personal information won’t be logged or sold to third parties. This service also has DNS and IP leak protection and a solid kill switch that will keep you private even in case of a VPN failure.

VyprVPN is one of the most secure VPNs for Australia, thanks to its bank-grade encryption, malware blocker, and the Chameleon protocol. The latter works great against firewalls and all sorts of blocking. So if the regular connection can’t to the job, Chameleon mos certainly will.

What’s even more impressive is that VyprVPN owns and manages all 700+ of its physical servers in 70+ countries. You’ll also find options in Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth. Thanks to that and the next-gen WireGuard protocol, prepare to experience fast speeds and stable connections.

While this provider supports P2P traffic, it won’t stand for copyright violations. On the bright side, streaming Netflix and other content platforms with VyprVPN is a great idea. You’ll access both Australian content from abroad and the most popular movies and shows worldwide.

Even though VyprVPN no longer has a free trial, its 30-day money-back guarantee should be more than enough to test the service thoroughly. You get a 5 device limit per account.

For a deeper investigation of VyprVPN, read our VyprVPN review.

5. Private Internet Access – the biggest server fleet in 2021

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
78
Number of servers
Number of servers:
29300
Support
Support:
Live chat, email
  • Very cheap
  • Largest server fleet among VPNs
  • 10 simultaneous connections
  • Not good in China

Private Internet Access (PIA) is based in the US, which is one of the least privacy-friendly countries. However, this VPN for Australia has proven on a number of occasions that its commitment to user anonymity is a priority. Multiple court cases where PIA was unable to provide any data show that their no-logs policy is valid.

PIA boasts mind-boggling 29300+ servers. Throw in the WireGuard tunneling protocol and you get a solid performance not only in Australia but all 78+ countries. Cleary, when it comes to global coverage, PIA is the best VPN for Australia.

This service has all the tools to keep you safe online. It all starts with AES 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and leak protection. Furthermore, PIA adds malware protection, Shadowsocks, and the option to pay with cryptocurrencies for even more privacy.

You can use PIA for Netflix Australia and other libraries. If you have a decent internet connection, streaming in high quality should be possible wherever you may roam. It’s also great for torrenting, adding features such as split tunneling and port forwarding.

PIA doesn’t have a free trial, but you can still test it risk-free, thanks to the 30-day money-back guarantee option. In addition to the popular payment options, Private Internet Access accepts cryptocurrencies and even gift cards.

For a deeper investigation of Private Internet Access, read our Private Internet Access review.

6. IPVanish – a VPN for Australia without virtual servers

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
75
Number of servers
Number of servers:
1500
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat, email, knowledge base
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
112 Mbit/s
  • Excellent security
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Unblocks Netflix US
  • No anonymous payment options

Although this VPN for Australia is based in the US (a Five Eyes alliance member), IPVanish does enough to protect you online. To start with, it has a strict no-logs policy, meaning your data isn’t collected, and there’s nothing to show to law enforcement. Moving on, we find leak protection and a kill switch that are invaluable in case your VPN connection drops unexpectedly.

When it comes to security features, IPVanish has more than enough. First of all, this provider relies on top-notch AES-256 encryption. Brute force attacks against you will be ineffective because it takes more than a lifetime to break this cipher.

What’s more, IPVanish includes Stealth VPN, a feature that masks your VPN traffic. This way, you’ll be able to access websites and services in Australia and abroad that block Virtual Private Networks. By the way, IPVanish also unlocks Netflix US and allows torrenting, both of which benefit greatly from the WireGuard tunneling protocol that’s available on most devices.

IPVanish offers 1500+ physical servers in 75+ countries. More than 50 servers are in Australia, spread across Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Sydney, and Adelaide. And now the best part – IPVanish owns the whole fleet, which is yet another safety bonus.

This service lacks a free trial, but you can still use its 30-day money-back guarantee. Plus, while being already inexpensive, IPVanish allows a limitless number of devices. It means you can share the same account with your family or friends.

For a deeper investigation of IPVanish, read our IPVanish review.

7. PureVPN – a VPN for Australia with most country options

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
140
Number of servers
Number of servers:
6500
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
100 Mbit/s
  • Temptingly low pricing
  • 10 simultaneous connections
  • Good range of supported platforms
  • No WireGuard protocol

One of the top VPNs for Australia, PureVPN offers the best global coverage with impressive 6500+ servers in record-breaking 140+ countries. There are over 450 servers in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, and Brisbane. As a result, PureVPN is great for those in Australia and those who want to connect to a country no other VPN offers.

Based in Hong Kong, PureVPN has an independently-audited no-logs policy and a lengthy list of features that will help you to protect your online privacy in Australia. It all starts with NASA-grade encryption, continues with reliable tunneling protocols, and doesn’t end with a kill switch. Also, PureVPN has IP and DNS leak protection.

Streaming fans will be happy to learn that this provider unblocks Netflix US and other libraries. You’ll be able to watch other platforms as well. When it comes to torrenting, it’s allowed on all servers. Moreover, the port forwarding feature will let you seed, which is often required in the P2P world.

PureVPN comes with ten simultaneous connections. There’s a 7-day trial for less than a buck but if you don’t want to spend a dime, grab the 31-day money-back guarantee.

For a deeper investigation of PureVPN, read our PureVPN review.

8. Hotspot Shield – fast VPN for Australia

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
85
Number of servers
Number of servers:
1800
Support
Support:
24/7 live chat
  • Free version
  • Very fast
  • Great for Netflix
  • Most plans are not cheap

Hotspot Shield Premium is a paid version of this Australia VPN. The added benefits include choosing from 1800+ servers in 85+ countries (6 cities in Australia), no ads, and no data cap. It’s a vast improvement on an otherwise excellent product.

The service is based in the US, which is not the best location for a VPN. Despite that, Hotspot Shield’s no-logs policy ensures your data isn’t stored and thus cannot be shared with third parties. Additionally, leak protection and a kill switch further enhance the privacy level.

Hotspot Shield relies entirely on its in-house Hydra protocol, which provides excellent speed without sacrificing security. Unfortunately, this makes the service impossible to set up on the router. Therefore, you will be restricted to five simultaneous connections with no way to expand the device count.

P2P connections are enabled and work on all servers. Besides, there’s a useful feature named split tunneling that can protect certain apps, like torrent clients. Hotspot Shield unblocks Netflix Australia and other libraries, including Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, and Hulu + Live TV.

You can try the limited Hotspot Shield version as long as you want, so there’s no real free trial available. On the other hand, the Premium plan has a lengthy 45-day money-back guarantee, which is 50% longer than what most competitors can offer in 2021.

For a deeper investigation of Hotspot Shield, read our Hotspot Shield review.

The best perk of each Australia VPN

NordVPNFastest VPN for Australia
SurfsharkUnlimited devices
PrivateVPNCheap VPN for streaming
VyprVPNLow-priced and security-oriented
Private Internet AccessThe biggest server fleet
IPVanishAustralia VPN without virtual servers
PureVPNMost country options
Hotspot ShieldFast and great for Netflix

How to pick the best VPN for Australia

When picking the best VPN for Australia, we consider various features. Some of them might be more useful if you’re abroad and want some “Australian” content that is now inaccessible. In other cases, you might be living in the country but are concerned about your privacy (and rightfully so). Here’s what you should be looking for when you’re looking for a VPN service:

  • No-logs policy – the service should keep no identifiable data on you. It’s the only way to keep your privacy secure.
  • Security – anything that makes your traffic harder to hijack is a plus. This includes reliable encryption and secure tunneling protocols.
  • Performance –when connected to a VPN server, your internet speed should remain stable and high enough for bandwidth-intensive tasks like downloads and streaming.
  • Value – the service price should be reasonable compared to the competition and the features that a particular provider brings to the table.
  • Compatibility – if you own multiple devices from different brands, make sure your Australia VPN has apps for them all. In the worst case, it should allow you to configure the VPN manually.
  • Customer support – it’s often forgotten and remembered only when you need it, and you need it fast. Don’t settle for a VPN that doesn’t have 24/7 customer support.

Hopefully, this will help you when picking the best VPN for Australia.

Fastest VPN for Australia – Speed Test

If you’re in Australia, you need a fast VPN. When the continent is almost 4,000 km (2,500 miles) in length and width, your connection from Perth to Brisbane will definitely suffer from slow service.

Now imagine connecting to Netflix US or BBC iPlayer and trying to watch a 4K video that requires at least 25 Mbps – chances are you’ll be left with less than half of your original speed.

That’s why we’ve run speed tests for these 8 VPNs for Australia to see if you’ll be able to torrent and stream in HD.

PlaceProviderUploadDownloadAverage
1.NordVPN60 Mbps214 Mbps137 Mbps
2.PIA78 Mbps131 Mbps105 Mbps
3.Surfshark VPN56 Mbps151 Mbps104 Mbps
4.PrivateVPN132 Mbps70 Mbps101 Mbps
5.
Hotspot Shield85 Mbps107 Mbps96 Mbps
6.VyprVPN20 Mbps70 Mbps54 Mbps
7.IPVanish19 Mbps78 Mbps49 Mbps
8.PureVPN25 Mbps66 Mbps46 Mbps

As you can see from the table above. NordVPN is the fastest VPN for Australia in 2021. It’s almost 25% faster than Private Internet Access and shows exceptionally good download numbers. If we don’t count the upload, Surfshark is your next best option.

You can check out our full list of fastest VPNs overall if you travel a lot and need maximum performance in every corner of the world.

What can I use a VPN in Australia for?

Australia is one of those few countries that have no legal right to privacy embedded in the constitution. The situation is grim when it comes to internet privacy, and it shows through recent government actions. Australia’s participation in the Five Eyes alliance means invasive surveillance, and it’s entirely legal for your ISP to keep tabs on you. Sadly, it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Avoid copyright issues in Australia

Australian federal government recently expanded its crackdown on piracy. There are monitoring agencies like INCOPRO that work in tandem with the government to close down torrent tracker websites. The Copyright Amendment Bill was passed in 2018, which heavily restricts the distribution of copyrighted content.

Naturally, it is a crime in Australia to torrent copyrighted material even though there’s not much done against BitTorrent, uTorrent, or Vuze users. Nevertheless, most BitTorrent tracker sites such as IsoHunt, ThePirateBay, Torrentz, and TorrentHound are blocked as a direct consequence of passed bills. The total number of blacklisted torrent trackers is growing and includes all the most popular sites.

This, combined with the logging policies, can mean big trouble for you. Therefore, you should never go torrenting without a reliable VPN service. Our recommendation is NordVPN, the best VPN for Australia.

Avoid data retention

In 2014, Australia became a pioneer country, introducing legislation that severy undermines the privacy of its citizens. Next year, the US and the UK followed. We’re talking about the data retention law that requires telcos to store users’ metadata for two years (more than in any Western country) without any warrant.

This Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment (Data Retention) Act 2015 includes metadata from your phone calls, SMS, cell tower locations, and online activities, such as emails or browsing. If that wasn’t enough, the Federal Court has ruled that such metadata has nothing to do with personal information as such. The government even didn’t think of a better excuse for such mass surveillance, citing terrorism as the reason for this Act.

However, this makes more sense when you remember that just like the US and the UK, Australia is a member of the Five Eyes intelligence alliance. Therefore, this information might be needed for other countries in the first place. All this comes after the Australian Privacy Foundation, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, and Human Rights Council have all deemed metadata collection to be against human rights.

That’s why you should encrypt your internet traffic and hide your IP address to avoid data retention in Australia. For that, we highly recommend NordVPN, the #1 choice.

Abusing the data retention law

More problems arise due to the lack of clear data set definition. This leads to the government collecting as much data as it can without any attempt to target only a specific format or data range.

Unfortunately, a large enough batch of metadata can become as revealing as the data itself. Furthermore, for some reason, browsing history also falls under the metadata category, even though the government claimed otherwise.

When the telcos and the government handle two years’ worth of data, its security becomes a concern. In one instance, the Australian Federal Police provided sensitive data to the Senate that was freely available online for years. In 2019, ACT Policing disclosed that they unlawfully accessed metadata more than 3,000 times.

There’s even no clear-cut answer as to which government institutions qualify as “enforcement agencies” – only these can access (meta)data. And when there’s no need for a warrant, the Attorney-General can authorize any institution she wants. However, many institutions involving taxi companies, a veterinarian, and some anti-dumping agencies found and used a loophole to get the metadata they needed.

Finally, there’s a serious lack of evidence that would show the efficiency of mass surveillance. Neither the US, Germany, nor Australia had any example where such data prevented a terrorist attack. And in the end, the users themselves are paying for this data retention system as the government only partially covers its cost for the telcos. So maybe the time has come to finally propose Australia’s first Human Rights Bill for a change?

Avoid being hacked by law enforcement

August 2021 was a pivotal moment for Human Rights in Australia. A new Surveillance Legislation Amendment (Identify and Disrupt) Bill 2020 was passed, allowing law enforcement to hack into your devices and social media accounts without a judicial warrant.

There’s no institution to regulate the use of this bill, leaving everything at the hands of the police. And while it’s aimed at fighting child abuse and terrorism, it can be used for investigating any serious crime. That includes piracy, tax evasion, bankruptcy, or company violations. Failing to comply can result in a jail sentence of up to ten years.

While no VPN has the power to fully protect you from government surveillance, it’s still better to use one. Firstly, your IP and location will be hidden, and if the provider doesn’t have any identifying logs, the search comes to a dead end. Moreover, your data is encrypted with a military-grade cipher, which is virtually unbreakable.

Use a VPN for torrenting in Australia

Even though torrenting in Australia is legal, you should still use a VPN for your P2P endeavors. That’s because downloading and streaming copyrighted content is punishable by law. Add a Federal Court’s decision to allow law enforcement to target users, mix in The Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Bill, and you have yourself a not very P2P-friendly ecosystem.

If that alone wasn’t enough, a new Surveillance Legislation Amendment (Identify and Disrupt) Bill 2020, passed in August 2021, allows law enforcement to hack into anyone’s devices or online accounts without a warrant if they suspect you’re involved in acts of piracy.

The sad part is that there’s no upper limit for the compensatory damages that a user might be obliged to pay. The fun part is that no one has been punished for torrenting yet. That being said, if you don’t want to be the first one, you should get a reliable VPN for Australia.

For starters, a VPN will help you access blocked P2P sites, such as The Pirate Bay. All you have to do is connect from another country, and the ISP won’t stop you from browsing freely. When using a VPN, you’re hiding your real IP address and encrypting your traffic. This way, no one can tell what you’re doing online, and all third parties will see the IP of the VPN server.

Bypass geo-blocking

Australians are also restricted when it comes to legal streaming services for sports and other entertainment. There’s no way to purchase streaming services like Sling TV, BBC iPlayer, or HBO Now. Illegal streaming isn’t an option, but paid services may not always be available. This means that most Australians miss out on the content that the rest of the world freely enjoys.

Australian Netflix

Netflix is the most popular streaming platform, and while it’s available in Australia, it doesn’t offer the same number of shows as some other libraries do. Below you can see the difference in movies and TV shows available in major English-speaking markets, as per Unogs.com.

CountryMoviesTV showsTotal
Australia3,800+2,100+5,900+
United States3,700+2,100+5,800+
United Kingdom4,100+2,100+6,200+
Canada3,900+2,000+5,900+
South Africa3,600+2,100+5,700+

But it’s not always about quantity. Sadly, some of the popular Netflix movies and TV shows are unavailable to Aussies.

Here’s a list of Netflix’s US-exclusive content that’s still unavailable in Australia:

  • The Hateful Eight: Extended Version (movie)
  • Barbie in a Mermaid Tale (movie)
  • Twin Peaks (series)
  • Casino Royale (movie)
  • Manhunt: Deadly Games (series)
  • Survivor (series)
  • Transformer (movie)
  • Last Tango in Halifax (series)

Based on the following examples, it should be pretty clear that if you’re in Australia, you should opt for NordVPN, the best VPN for Australia. This is the only solution to be free from surveillance and enjoy unrestricted internet.

Access blocked websites

Even if you’re not interested in circumventing geo-blocks and geo-restrictions, there’s another type of block in Australia. We’re talking about the Australian Site Blocking Bill, which came into force in 2015. According to it, certain “copyright-infringing websites” will be blocked by the ISPs upon a request from the copyright holders.

This means that without a VPN, you won’t be able to visit The Pirate Bay, IsoHunt, 123movies, and other piracy-related websites from all over the world. In 2020 alone, more than 80 sites have been added to Australia’s blacklist, showing that the censorship is still going strong. Site owners claim they offer only a search engine and won’t host any illegal content on their servers.

The best way to deal with this blocking is to use a VPN, such as NordVPN. When you connect to a server in another country like New Zealand, you will get a new IP address. It will allow you to visit your desired site, provided it’s not already blocked in your chosen country. And because of your encrypted traffic, no one will be able to tell what kind of websites you’re visiting.

Protect your activity on public wifi

There are over 600,000 free wifi networks in Australia, as per Wiman.me. To put this in context, Canada has over 2 million, though its area, population, and density are comparable. Indeed, the spread of public wifi in Australia has been quite slow – while most hotels offer a free connection, this has yet to become a norm in Down Under.

Of all available hotspots, 50,000+ are in Melbourne, 35,000+ in Sydney, while Brisbane, Perth, and Adelaide have around 16,000 apiece. The situation in Canada is even more urban-centric – more than half of all free wifi’s are in the five biggest cities. Online life in the metropolis seems to be fine, but getting a free connection in rural areas still poses trouble.

Rural wifi options

There are some solutions for areas where the population is less dense than vacuum. A company named Speedcast offers satellite wifi for remote locations, such as ships, mines, or the Great Sandy Desert. The hotspot covers about half a mile, which should be enough for most super-rural getaways. Then it’s up to the owner to decide whether this will be a free or paid service for her customers.

While Speedcast’s offer seems like a great solution, let’s not forget that satellite wifi has an upper limit of 100 Mbps, and you most certainly won’t be getting it in the middle of Australia. Finally, we’re not talking about the cost of starting such a hotspot in the first place. Therefore, it seems that the regions will have to wait for the NBN network to roll out.

 

NBN network coverage in Australia

 

The picture above shows NBN-ready locations in purple as of October 2020. Yes, that’s not much, especially if you reside in Northern Territory.

Urban wifi options

Sydney has a pretty good public wifi network that includes five of its beaches. The municipality of Melbourne also made sure that you have a decent connection. However, there’s a 250 MB daily limit. When in Brisbane or Perth, you will find free wifi in most public spaces, parks, and cafes.

As for Perth, it was the first Australian city to cover all central business districts. Finally, the capital Canberra also added the suburban regions to its CBD. But what about the Aussie telcos – do they offer free wi-fi?

It turns out that Telstra, the largest telco in Australia, has built the largest free wifi with more than 1 million hotspots. As you can see from the picture above, its coverage is much better than NBN’s.

Telstra free wifi hotspots in Australia

The caveat is that Telstra Air service is available to its clients only. In the meantime, the second-largest telco in Optus is only planning to build a simal network, while Vodafone and TPG seem to be busy with their merger.

When on public wifi, turn on your VPN

No matter which one you use in Australia, all public wifis suffer from the same vulnerabilities. A cybercriminal can use a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack to steal your login credentials and even lure you into a fake banking site. When you use a VPN, such as NordVPN,  your traffic becomes encrypted, meaning no one can see what you’re doing online.

What should I look for in a VPN for Australia?

Understandably, not all VPNs for Australia have the same features, and having the most doesn’t mean there’s one key thing missing. Therefore, when looking for the best Australia VPN, make sure it offers these basics:

  • AES 256-bit encryption. It’s an industry standard, and you shouldn’t settle for anything less.
  • Kill switch. A key component that drops your internet connection in case of a VPN failure.
  • Leak protection. DNS, IP, and WebRTC leaks can expose your data without you even noticing.
  • No-logs. A VPN for Australia might be registered in a privacy-friendly location, but if it logs and, God forbid, shares your personal information, using such service beats the purpose.
  • Compatibility. Make sure there are apps for your devices and manual configuration instructions for routers and other options.
  • 24/7 customer support. It’s essential to have a 24/7 helpdesk to solve unexpected problems swiftly. While live chat is the best option, some VPNs communicate quickly via email as well.

All VPNs mentioned on this page meet these requirements. That being said, NordVPN exceeds them, easily winning in the best VPN for Australia category.

Which VPN servers in Australia should I choose?

Generally speaking, you should choose the closest VPN server in Australia. This way, you’ll get the best possible connectivity and speed. Most of the time, it will be enough to pick a country, and the VPN will do the rest, selecting the optimal option.

However, not all VPN providers show particular cities, which can be a difference given how big Australia is. Most of the time, it’ll be Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, and Perth. And sometimes, the closest option can be overcrowded, so choosing a VPN for Australia like NordVPN with city-level server selection is always a good idea.

Best VPN in Australia, according to Whirlpool

Whirlpool is an independent Australian forum with 820,000 daily users. One of the widely discussed subjects is which one is the best VPN for Australia. Most people are truly frustrated by the imposed restrictions on privacy and are actively looking for solutions.

Surprisingly, we noticed that Surfshark VPN is one of the biggest favorites on Whirlpool. It gets praise for reliability, the ability to unblock Netflix, and great security features. Here’s what one user had to say about this service:

best vpn australia

VPNs to avoid in Australia

Not all VPNs guarantee your safety. Some of them might claim they don’t keep logs, when in fact, they still log connections and other data that could incriminate or identify you. Therefore, make sure to avoid VPNs that don’t comply with the basic requirements for the best VPNs for Australia.

We recommend that you avoid all free VPNs because they are simply not secure enough. They log too much data and even sell or share that information with third parties, including marketers and legal authorities. So, you want to stay away from Hola VPN, VPN Gate, and the like. The only free VPNs we can advise trying are in our Best Free VPN for Australia article.

Are free VPNs reliable?

Most free VPNs aren’t reliable at all. However, the same can be said about a number of premium VPNs as well. It all comes down to the reputation and the actual quality of a particular service.

The problem with free VPNs is the logging they do. Even though it says “no-logs policy,” that doesn’t mean your personal information is not being sold to third parties. What’s more, free VPNs might have serious vulnerabilities, and some can even be a source of malware. Another problem is that many of them are registered in the United States, which is far from a privacy-friendly country.

That’s why we strongly recommend choosing a free VPN service for Australians from our curated list. Most of them come with military-grade encryption, a strict no-logs policy, and a kill switch. This should be enough to secure your connection and access blocked websites. Most of them also offer premium plans in case you need more features.

If you’re in Australia, which VPNs have you used before? Did we miss any great VPNs for Australia? Let us know in the comments below.


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FAQ

Are VPNs legal in Australia?

VPNs have legitimate purposes; no laws are prohibiting them. Using such a service to access geo-blocked content is not considered illegal in Australia. The Productivity Commission in Australia stated that due to strict copyright laws, Australians get charged more for inferior services than those of overseas markets. The report also cleared that means to circumvent geo-blocking are not illegal.

What is the best VPN for streaming in Australia?

NordVPN is the best VPN for streaming in Australia. It unblocks multiple Netflix libraries as well as other streaming services, such as BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Disney+, or YouTube TV.

Is free VPN good for Australia?

We don’t recommend using a free VPN in Australia. This country has serious issues with online privacy and surveillance that often prove to be too much for any but the best Australia VPNs listed above.

Is it safe to use a VPN in Australia?

VPNs are legal in Australia, so it’s safe to use them. However, the country has many issues with online privacy, such as surveillance or data retention. If you use a low-quality VPN, your chances of staying anonymous will remain low. That’s why we advise picking any provider from the list above to ensure you’re safe when using a VPN in Australia.

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  1. Naj

    You have a very good list of VPNs. Honestly, i tried most of them and a lot didn’t get me Kayo in my country. Expressvpn got the job done, as well as NordVPN, but recently i’m being blocked. I’m using bulletvpn as a backup now, hope it remains consistent.

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